In response to the question about pastel pencils. At the
elementary level. I really think that the cost alone would be prohibitive.
Unless you have an enormous budget, or a small student group.
With a pencil form of pastel, you lose the great technique of
using the stick on its side to shade and the line variety of thins and
thicks would not be as great. I use Nupastels and Crayola with grades 1-5,
good mix of colors with both sets available.
If you think they are being too messy try the following methods:
1) smocks (got nice dark blue ones, vinyl with velcro closure, from one of
the big catalogs)
2) have them stand up to work, it alleviates a lap full of dust and avoids
them leaning over and getting a belly full of artwork.
3) wrap the end of the sticks in papertowel. ( less chalk on hands )
4) teach them to never never blend with just their hand, Always wrap one
ir two fingers in a paper towel to blend.
5) spray the paper with a spray bottle right before working to avoid dust
6) I tell them to never blow the dust, but to shake it onto the floor and
we mop at the end of the day.(that way the dust stays low)
We also store the artwork between classes in between newspaper sheets.
Laminating the work when it is finished is a big hit with the parents, no
smears. I also HATE spray fixative with a passion !
Hope this helps, Christine Besack :)